During a previously unannounced trade mission to Montreal, Governor Chris Sununu spoke warmly on Monday about hundreds of years of economic ties between Quebec and New Hampshire.
But Sununu also expressed an urgent need to complete the controversial Northern Pass project, which would bring hydro-electric power from Quebec to New England.
“Given our economic dynamics in New Hampshire, given our need for lower energy prices, our rich history with our manufacturing industry, there is no doubt that Northern Pass presents a great opportunity for New Hampshire, a great opportunity for Quebec," Sununu said.
When asked when he’d like to see the project completed, Sununu added, “I’d shoot for tomorrow, if I could. I think we need to get this project done--completed--as soon as possible.”
Many environmental groups and residents of New Hampshire's North Country oppose Northern Pass, arguing its transmission lines will be a blight on the state’s forests and harm property values.
Sununu also waded into another cross-border topic during a press conference with Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard, calling for an updated North American Free Trade Agreement.
“I’m hopeful that we are not going to just throw it out,” he said, “but again, we have to do what we can do to create a system that works beneficial on both sides of the border.”
Sununu said he has faith that President Trump, along with the secretaries of Commerce and State departments, can use their experience with international deals to rework NAFTA and avoid any unintended consequences.
“They put results first over politics," he said. "And when you do that, you are bound to get the best possible outcomes.”
During his brief trade mission, Sununu also attended a luncheon with local political and community leaders, as well as a reception at the U.S. Consulate.